Just for YOU! Taking a Breath

The holiday season has officially arrived! This can be a stressful time for a variety of reasons and this year brings new challenges that may add to that stress. Our Just for YOU monthly moment offers a new stress management tool through the practice of mindfulness. Remember, mindfulness is the concentrated effort to check in with yourself and your surroundings as a way to practice self-care and to stay present in the moment.

Last month we introduced you to the Mindfulness Toolkit from Zero to Three. The toolkit explains that mindfulness is a foundational skill that supports health, well-being, and connection with children, families, and others. We also looked at their How Am I practice, an internal awareness activity to gage your mental and physical status. This month we will walk through the second activity, creating a three-minute breathing space. The breath is a powerful thing, it can help calm your nervous system, increase energy, relax muscle tension and much more! This particular exercise comes from Zindal Segel, PhD, a Co-Founder of Mindfulness Based Cognitive and is described as an “internal grounding exercise.” It will help you focus on what’s happening with you internally so you can calmly address all that is happening externally. Another benefit of taking a few minutes a day for yourself is the positive effect it can have on your adult-to-child or adult-to-adult relationships

  1. Start in a standing or sitting position. One that makes you feel relaxed but not so relaxed you fall asleep!
  2. Minute 1: Awareness. Take note of your thoughts, emotions, and any physical sensations like tension.
  3. Minute 2: Gather your breath. Take a deep breath, feel it all the way in your belly. Now exhale. Keep practicing these deep belly breaths.
  4. Minute 3: Create extended awareness. You’ve been focusing on what that breath feels like in the belly, inhaling and exhaling. Now, bring your thoughts to what changes are happening to your thoughts, emotions, and body.
  5. Continue on with your day. Have you noticed a shift in your focus? Take three minutes at any time to repeat the steps.

For a more thorough understanding of mindfulness practices, make sure to download the toolkit and resources from Zero to Three.

Professional Development-Deep Dive

If you’ve been curious about trainings offered by QSSB and exactly what they are for, check out our deep dive into Social Emotional for Early Learning (SEFEL) and the Desired Results Developmental Profile (DRDP 2015). Both trainings address elements of the California Quality Counts Rating Matrix. We will continue to highlight various trainings, so stay tuned!

Upcoming Trainings:

November 30thGetting Started with Lesson Planning and Observation, Part 1 (Part 2 is December 14th.) Participants of this 2-part series will discover various types of documentation and how to apply them, how to identify observation opportunities within the daily routine, and how to utilize family observations.

January 20thEarly Literacy Pathways Series. This four-part series from San Bernardino County Superintendent of Schools will cover Learning Foundations, Foundational Reading Skills, Developmentally Appropriate Instruction, and Universal Design for Learning and Early Learning.

As always, make sure to keep an eye on the QSSB training calendar of the most up-to-date offerings including Communities of Practice available for English and Spanish speakers.

To register for any trainings, you must first log into your California Workforce Registry account at caregistry.org.

Thankful for You

Mr. Rogers said, “In every neighborhood, all across our country, there are good people insisting on a good start for the young, and doing something about it.” This describes the early educators in San Bernardino County and we are thankful for it! Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours from QSSB.

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